No matter how you make your living, you want to work with people who account for what they do. They show up on good days and they show up on bad. You know they’ll be there, and because they are you have one less thing to worry about.
That was the problem with Cam Newton’s post-game 90-second mini non-news conference after Sunday’s loss to New Orleans.
When life is good and games are breaking his way the Carolina quarterback is talkative and entertaining. He is going to be the face of the NFL. When things go poorly, he ducks away, as he did Sunday, as if in search of an offensive line that has yet to be there all season, the league’s face nowhere to be found.
In the late 1990s, the Carolina Panthers had among the worst offensive lines not just in NFL history but in the history of the world. Quarterback Steve Beuerlein could have saved time by taking the snap on his back. Carolina offensive linemen were hammered weekly with questions about their performance. And the player who stood in front of his locker after every game and answered every question was offensive lineman Frank Garcia.
Garcia had become a media star after taking on and defeating the roster of the Oakland Raiders in a fight in 1997, so he was the player to which we turned. Now a host of WFNZ’s Bustin’ Loose, Garcia was never a quarterback. But he was accountable.
That might be a small thing. It might not.